• Eastern Cape Rising Sun

Budget: R395m for 20 000 houses for racial integration

During the 2019 State of the City Address, Buffalo City Mayor Xola Pakati announced that R396m will be spent towards re-dressing apartheid spatial patterns.

Buffalo City Metropolitan Municipality is securing land for a new batch of houses to be built to target racial integration and mutual co-existence. The secondary aim is to build houses closer to amenities and places of work.

According to Pakati, BCMM was voted as the best run Metro in South Africa when it comes to Human Settlement Delivery Programmes. “It is our vision that by 2030 all the rural areas in our metro should be spatially, socially and economically well integrated with improved access to basic services,” promised Pakati.

Houses will be built for the following areas in the Metro:

· 2 870 houses will be built for Westbank Restitution, Amalinda Co-op, Postdam Kanana and Reeston. The City has provided internal services for 2 560 sites.

· 1 680 houses for the residents of the Metro.

· 800 housing units for the Boxwood Housing project, resettling the Orange Groove informal settlement, in partnership with the Provincial Department of Human Settlements

· Overall, 4 500 houses will be constructed.

· 952 housing units in Reeston Phase 3

· 5 000 housing units in Duncan Village

· Reeston Multi-Purpose Centre (MPC) will be completed in this financial year.

· 620 houses constructed in Peelton Village

· 500 houses for the Postdam Village Housing - that are targeting upgrading of human life and restoration of lost dignity.

· 1 444 residential sites in Mzamomhle, eMajarantiyeni, Hani Park, Matsheni Park, Khayelitsha and Cambridge West.

· 1 555 sites in Ginsberg, Kwatshatshu, Xhwithinja, Empilisweni, Phola Park, Masibulele and East Bank Restitution.

· Nompumelelo and Ducats, the land acquisition for the housing project is at an advanced stage.

Most of these areas have been highly contested hot spots with locals invading houses earmarked for beneficiaries, with people complaining about the long wait. Hundreds of families were heavy-handedly evicted by private security and police in Phakamisa, Fynbos and East Bank. The Metro has also been evicting locals that have built permanent structures in land that is not legally theirs. “I plead with the people of our City to not fall prey to the schemes of people selling land and houses and to report these devious acts. We have become aggressive in dealing with the spate of land grabs in our Metro. As an immediate intervention on this challenge, we have identified land parcels which are under threat of being invaded and have approached the high court for a prohibitory court interdict,” he warned.

Law enforcement services conduct periodical patrols on identified areas to eliminate any illegal occupation and to identify the perpetrators.

The Land Management Policy has also been put under review to ensure that newly developed urban settlements have a waterborne sewerage system before top structures are constructed. This seeks to bring dignity to people and to guarantee their health.

“As a forward-looking intervention, we are exploring the possibility of creating and selling affordable serviced sites for residents who can afford to build their houses,” he let in.

Superintendent Loretta Moonsamy and Buffalo City Mayor, Xola Pakati observe the National Anthem at the State of The City Address held last Friday.

Hundreds of Buffalo Flat residents queued up on Thursday for a five-day round of human settlement registrations for RDP houses at Billy Francis Hall. Locals lamented the lack of attention given to the coloured community’s registration list, as they claim they have registered before. Upon registration, one receives a blue card and many have had one since 1998.


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